Talk ’N Text stifles Petron, seizes top spot
MANILA, Philippines—Defending champion Talk ‘N Text shut down Petron Blaze down the stretch to fashion out a 95-82 win and clinch the top spot Wednesday night in the 38th PBA Philippine Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The Tropang Texters held the Boosters scoreless in the last 3:19 to break loose from a nip-and-tuck payoff period.
“I’m really happy with the way we played defense in the second half. The players are starting to buy into becoming a defensive team,” said TNT head coach Norman Black.
Talk ‘N Text hiked its impressive slate to 11-2 going into its last elimination game against crowd-darling Ginebra.
“It doesn’t guarantee anything but we’re already qualified, that’s our goal from the beginning. It’s a good total team effort. We were very tenacious on defense,” added Black.
Jimmy Alapag uncorked a long three that broke a 78-deadlock, sparking an explosive 17-4 TNT run to end the game.
Jayson Castro shone anew with 23 points, eight rebounds and five assists.
Arwind Santos scored the Boosters’ last basket, 82-88.
The Tropang Texters also snapped the Boosters’ three-game winning streak as Petron dropped to 6-7.
Santos finished with 22 points and 11 rebounds.
Petron led by as much as eight, 44-36, in the second period but just couldn’t sustain its form in the second half as TNT made the necessary adjustments on both ends of the floor.
ALASKA 88—Abueva 20, Baguio 19, Baracael 12, Thoss 12, Casio 9, Espinas 7, Jazul 6, Dela Cruz 2, Eman 1, Reyes 0, Hontiveros 0.
MERALCO 85—Ross 14, Cardona 14, Hodge 13, Hugnatan 11, Mercado 10, Borboran 9, Nabong 6, Reyes 5, Buenafe 3, Salvacion 0.
Quarters: 24-21, 43-34, 64-66, 88-85
TALK ‘N TEXT 95—Castro 23, Williams 14, Reyes 12, Alapag 11, De Ocampo 10, Peek 9, Dillinger 8, Fonacier 6, Carey 2, Aban 0, Alvarez 0.
PETRON 82—Santos 22, Cabagnot 17, Lassiter 12, Fajardo 7, Lutz 7, Yeo 5, Washington 5, Faundo 4, Miranda 3, Duncil 0.
Quarters: 15-18, 38-44, 66-66, 95-82
With a report from Musong R. Castillo
Originally posted at | 10:11 pm | Wednesday, November 28, 2012
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